Quick Response or QR codes are two-dimensional matrix bar codes. People use them to encode information. The codes have increasingly made their way into different industries and mobile communication to make the internet instantly accessible. There are many common instances when people use these codes. They use codes to encode textual information or link to make it instantly available. It removes the need for you to type a URL manually.
Since these codes have high information density and robustness, the concept of QR has gained popularity as part of the Internet of Things. You know applications from simple web links in any billboard ad to financial transactions during which highly sensitive data is tackled use QR. In other words, these codes are digital bar codes that people use for electronic tickets for travel or different events, to see a restaurant’s menu, or to even share product information at a retailer. The concept of QR is a quick way to get users or people to websites, promotional codes, and even mobile payments.
COVID-19 has enhanced the use of QR, with a growing number of businesses using these Codes for contact less encounters and overall financial transactions. Social networks have adopted the concept of QR for linking to personal profiles. Indeed, these concepts are now mainstream. However, attackers and hackers are aware of the rise. It might mean QR can be a threat to consumers or customers who use them.
QR Code Safety Threats
The ease and efficiency of QR Codes come with safety risks too. More and more people cannot differentiate between a fraudulent QR Code and a legitimate one when they use a QR reader to read them.
The point is hackers or Attackers can take easy advantage of the trust of people in these QRs. They do it by embedding malevolent software into the digital cubes. The QR attacks can potentially steal data from mobile phones or lead to phishing websites that might take away credentials and other personal information. For example:
- Essentially, codes can work as URLs, offering the same types of dangers as visiting a malicious website on a mobile phone. But contrary to a URL, users are not always able to recognize a malicious QR code. It is also alarming that most people don’t know that a QR can even write an email or text or make a phone call.
- Attackers can deliver malicious QR codes through instant messages, email, SMS, social media, and more. You know QR codes can easily initiate action on mobile phones, like launching a payment application and making any payment, adding a malicious contact, or following a malevolent account on social media. QR can also reveal the location of the victim or add a spiteful Wi-Fi network.
The simple thing is attackers can hack QRs as they are images and static. Remember that it is not just the financial dangers that come into play. Since the contemporary world adopts the technology to enable corona virus tracking, malicious or wrong codes might reduce the effectiveness of contact-tracing mechanisms. However, the usage of QRs in financial applications is quite tenser.
Use of Secure QR
Attackers can hack the general QRs, as you have already read above. But if you want security QR codes, then you can choose secure QR Codes. These codes are blockchain-based and hence, immutable. One cannot track, tamper or touch them in any capacity. There is a use of a unique hashtag in these secure codes. Once a person develops a QR, he puts a unique hash value and connects it with another QR on the blockchain. Hence, he ensures that the users do not get hacked while reading the QR code.
Once you scan the QR in the QR scanner to read, it would first match up with the QR on the blockchain. If it matches, only then can it be accessed. Hence, there is a proper blockchain-based system in secure Qr, and hackers cannot hack it. Moreover, the way there can be no two bio metric reports same, the similar case is with the hash value in secure QR. In a blockchain-based QR code on any document, transaction data, or anything else, you can be confident that there is a unique hash value to it.
The Bottom Line
The way every technology has threats, the QR technology also has its set of risks. If you use blockchain-based secure QR codes, there would be complete security. Also, if you stay intelligent and vigilant when using the internet, general QR codes can be safe too. If you want to make your QR journey safer, talk to us at ProofEasy, and we will guide you through.